Author Topic: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro  (Read 1051 times)

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Offline dexters_lab

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Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« on: March 24, 2020, 09:37:58 am »
I picked up this motherboard the other day on a whim, it just called out to me so had to have it... not sure what i am to do with it yet :-//

Board is a Gigabyte GA-686DX, the PPros are 200Mhz / 256kb cache versions overclocked to 233Mhz. The board is really nice, it's standard ATX and not the older AT or some other weird form factor like a lot of PPro boards were.

it is gorgeous though, it's a shame i have to cover up those CPUs with heatsinks!!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2020, 09:39:53 am by dexters_lab »
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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2020, 03:12:27 pm »
Wow, Gigabyte GA686DX seems to be hilariously late socket8 mobo. Early/mid 1998 and SIMMs, couple of months window before single Pentium 2 450MHz on off the shelf motherboard was faster, cheaper and less troublesome.

it's a shame i have to cover up those CPUs with heatsinks!!

why would you do that? the best you can do with a pair of PPros is hanging them on a wall anyway 8)
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Offline coppice

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2020, 04:55:07 pm »
Wow, Gigabyte GA686DX seems to be hilariously late socket8 mobo. Early/mid 1998 and SIMMs, couple of months window before single Pentium 2 450MHz on off the shelf motherboard was faster, cheaper and less troublesome.
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Offline Alex Eisenhut

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2020, 03:37:07 pm »
That brings back memories , I had a single PPro computer back in the day. I don't even know why I bought the thing, probably because it looked cool.
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Offline Ampera

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2020, 01:37:27 am »
Pentium Pros are beautiful, I have a 1996 top spec gaming machine with one in it.

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Offline rdl

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2020, 04:12:39 am »
Same here. It was my second computer, has a Diamond Monster II (Voodoo II) card in it and some kind of Soundblaster AWE if I remember right. It hasn't been turned on in many years though. I should drag it out of the closet some day and see if it'll still boot.
 

Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2020, 07:34:30 am »
I am contemplating a retro build using it but i am in two minds

i wanted to make a dual pentium pro, dual voodoo 2 machine, which IMO is cool-as f**k but Win98 will only use one CPU and even if i ran Win2K for SMP any games are going to be single thread anyway so the only tasks that could make use of the dual cpu  would be windows ones so it's a totally irrational thing to do... but it certainly has some kudos about it

the other option is a P3 1.4G Tualatin Dual Voodoo 2, which technically would be a far better machine

i am still undecided which way to go  :-\
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Offline Xolares

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2020, 08:59:05 pm »
Nice Score! Would be a good system for a Voodoo 2 SLI setup and dual boot 98SE and 2K. See if you can find the Pentium II Overdrives.

I have an Asus P2B-DS board i use as my main retro rig.
 

Offline HwAoRrDk

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2020, 03:41:27 pm »
Pentium Pros are beautiful, I have a 1996 top spec gaming machine with one in it.

I assume that's gaming on Windows, as I seem to recall that Pentium Pros were kinda sucky performance-wise with DOS games.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2020, 04:21:59 pm »
Just check if that clock chip has a replaceable battery, IIRC some of those at the time had a pop off cap that covered the CR2032 cell used for that purpose.

No visibly bad caps, either they have been replaced already, or just failed siently. Those boards are in the middle of Cap Plague territory.

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Offline mariush

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2020, 04:45:14 pm »
It's a nice board.
It cries for a bit more ram, you'd have to add in pairs.

Add a Creative / Aureal card on isa/pci, gigabit pci network card, a usb 2.0 controller on pci, maybe find some tnt2m64 or something similar on pci , add a voodoo2 if you want but not sure it's worth it.
I'd suggest using Windows 2003 ... it's doable if you get at least 128 MB of edo installed (the board seems to support 512 MB)
 

Offline Kilrah

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2020, 06:14:37 pm »
Mmmmmh old golden beauties :)
 
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Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2020, 12:10:32 pm »
Just check if that clock chip has a replaceable battery, IIRC some of those at the time had a pop off cap that covered the CR2032 cell used for that purpose.

No visibly bad caps, either they have been replaced already, or just failed siently. Those boards are in the middle of Cap Plague territory.

Mark, I should send you some of the old flatpacks I have, as you love the gold plated ceramics, and I do not see them in your collection.

thanks Sean, i'll PM you

RTC has been replaced, i found a previously depotted 12887 in a box so it's running an external CR2032 now.
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Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2020, 12:12:49 pm »
It's a nice board.
It cries for a bit more ram, you'd have to add in pairs.

Add a Creative / Aureal card on isa/pci, gigabit pci network card, a usb 2.0 controller on pci, maybe find some tnt2m64 or something similar on pci , add a voodoo2 if you want but not sure it's worth it.
I'd suggest using Windows 2003 ... it's doable if you get at least 128 MB of edo installed (the board seems to support 512 MB)

yea, i should get some more edo ram for it, but at the moment it looks like i am going down the P3 Tualatin / voodoo 2 route so i don't have many plans for this board now so might be put aside for some future project
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Offline HwAoRrDk

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2020, 05:02:39 pm »
Dual Voodoo2 in SLI or GTFO!  ;D

I wish I still had my two Voodoo2 SLI cards. :'( With a P3-800 and a Matrox Mystique G200 those things really flew. I eventually sold them on eBay to some German guy who collected Voodoo cards. He was very pleased to add them to his collection, as they were both 12MB STB BlackMagic models which were apparently a rarity in the European market. I wonder if he still has them...
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #15 on: April 09, 2020, 05:08:30 pm »
That takes me back. I think I still have a single PPro-200 machine stashed in my mom's shed, I should take it home sometime and see if it still works. I would have absolutely loved a dual one back in the day, PPros were way beyond what I could afford in their day.
 

Offline thinkfat

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #16 on: April 09, 2020, 07:40:09 pm »
I remember I had a single PPro, I think it was my first actual PC. I don't quite remember which graphics card I had, but I do remember owning a Matrox Mystique at a point. "Voodoo" rings a bell, though. The PPro, as far as I remember, was _just_ about able to run "lame" a bit faster than realtime. mp3enc only with -q.
 

Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2020, 08:29:49 am »
Dual Voodoo2 in SLI or GTFO!  ;D

I wish I still had my two Voodoo2 SLI cards. :'( With a P3-800 and a Matrox Mystique G200 those things really flew. I eventually sold them on eBay to some German guy who collected Voodoo cards. He was very pleased to add them to his collection, as they were both 12MB STB BlackMagic models which were apparently a rarity in the European market. I wonder if he still has them...

Similar story here, i had SLI in the day but ditched them when i went to GeForce2, but there was something different and special with 3Dfx, not sure what it was... maybe because it was a dedicated card to make your games faster?  :-//
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Offline james_s

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #18 on: April 11, 2020, 06:58:14 pm »
I still remember the very first time I ever played Quake on a Voodoo (original) card, I was absolutely blown away. That was the biggest quantum leap in gaming I can recall ever seeing, it completely transformed the experience.
 
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Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #19 on: April 13, 2020, 07:13:31 am »
I still remember the very first time I ever played Quake on a Voodoo (original) card, I was absolutely blown away. That was the biggest quantum leap in gaming I can recall ever seeing, it completely transformed the experience.

same, i remember getting a Diamond Monster 3D (Voodoo 1) just after they came out and it was like  :o :o :o :o :wtf: :wtf: :wtf:
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Offline james_s

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #20 on: April 13, 2020, 05:40:18 pm »
I actually still have one of those, NOS still shrinkwrapped in the original package. I helped clean out a storage closet at a large tech company I worked at in during the mid 2000's and this was in there. It was probably at its lowest value during the time I found it so it has decorated my shelf ever since.

The problem with something like this is I can't open it or it loses much of what makes it unique. In retrospect I kind of wish I'd kept the shrinkwrapped 33.6 modem I found at the same time, at one point I had an old (1.2GB?) Maxtor hard drive that was also NOS, I think I traded that to a friend. It would be fun to build a vintage PC from NOS parts, a bit like building one of the old Heathkits that occasionally turns up unbuilt.
 

Offline Kilrah

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2020, 07:00:02 pm »
It would be fun to build a vintage PC from NOS parts

 

Offline dexters_lab

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2020, 08:00:32 pm »
Yea that's really nice, defo keep hold of it!

I remember getting mine delivered at work and having the rest of the dept over my shoulder watching me try it out in the work pc!

I actually still have one of those, NOS still shrinkwrapped in the original package. I helped clean out a storage closet at a large tech company I worked at in during the mid 2000's and this was in there. It was probably at its lowest value during the time I found it so it has decorated my shelf ever since.

The problem with something like this is I can't open it or it loses much of what makes it unique. In retrospect I kind of wish I'd kept the shrinkwrapped 33.6 modem I found at the same time, at one point I had an old (1.2GB?) Maxtor hard drive that was also NOS, I think I traded that to a friend. It would be fun to build a vintage PC from NOS parts, a bit like building one of the old Heathkits that occasionally turns up unbuilt.
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Offline NiHaoMike

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Re: Gigabyte Dual Pentium Pro
« Reply #23 on: April 18, 2020, 02:12:29 am »
I remember when I first started learning Linux, Redhat 6.2 on a 200MHz Pentium Pro with 128MB of RAM. I also learned how bad Adobe software was when that Pentium, running xpdf, would scroll pages faster than Acrobat Reader on an 800MHz P3. Later on, that P3 became another Linux machine when I got a 2.4GHz P4 as my main PC, quickly discovering how Linux was becoming ready for everyday desktop use. The move to a 64 bit Athlon 64 machine was when I started going straight to Linux on new machines and haven't looked back ever since.
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